Posts Tagged ‘viral infection’

What You Need To Know About First Aid for Horse Owners

Posted on: August 8th, 2017 by Liddleworks Indie Media No Comments

The first things to consider when it comes to first aid for horse owners are temperature, pulse and breathing, particularly when your horse isn’t acting himself. Check them regularly so you have a record of his normal temperature, pulse, and respiratory rates on hand for comparison in the event of an accident or illness.

How to Check Your Horse’s Temperature

If possible, get someone to help you hold your horse while you take his temperature. Stand to one side of his hindquarters–never behind–and gently lift his tail. Insert the thermometer a few inches into the rectum and hold for one minute. Keep in mind that normal horse temperatures run 37.5 degrees to 38.5 degrees centigrade.

How to Check For Your Horse’s Pulse

Feel for the artery that runs over your horse’s jaw bone. This is the easiest to get an accurate reading from with practice. A normal heart rate is approximately 20 to 40 beats per minute.

Measuring Your Horse’s Respiratory Rate

A normal horse’s respiratory rate is 8 to 12 breaths per minute. You can either count how many times his nostrils flare in a minute, or how many times his ribs move up and down. This method can be trickier than the others and requires patient practice.

How to Treat a Wound

The first two things to remember if your horse suffers an injury is to keep calm, and secure him immediately. Then, gently wash the wound with water in a slow trickle from a hose or plastic syringe. Once clean, you’re free to assess the depth and severity of the wound. Try to steer clear of antiseptics; simply cleaning it and a light bandage should do the trick until the vet arrives.

Call your vet even if a wound near a joint or tendon looks minor, it can cause unseen long-term damage. If a wound won’t stop bleeding and requires stitches, keep pressure on it until the vet arrives. Be aware that the bleeding may be a result of puncture wounds or a hidden, embedded object.

Signs of Eye Injury

The signs of an eye injury include excessive tearing and blinking, it’s swollen or half shut, can be painful to the touch, or any other visible signs of injury.

In the event of a possible eye injury, always call your vet immediately. If left untreated, eye injuries can lead to infection and loss of sight. Try to keep your horse as calm as possible until your vet arrives, and if anything is protruding from the eye, leave it in until the professional arrives no matter how painful it may look.

Possible Fracture

Fractures can actually cause your horse to go into shock, so cover him with a blanket and keep him–and you–calm until professional help arrives. Never move your horse if you suspect a fracture, and call the vet immediately. Be prepared your horse may act distressed, have swelling, and sweat profusely due to the pain. Keep in mind not all fractures will be immediately visible, such as a bone sticking out unnaturally, so watch for sudden lameness.

How To Make an Essential First Aid Kit

Make sure to have the following essential items in a handy kit:

  • Blunt-ended scissors
  • Thermometer
  • Self-sticking crepe bandages
  • Cotton wool
  • Swabs
  • Gloves
  • Torch and wire cutters
  • Paper towel or kitchen roll
  • Gamgee
  • Poultice
  • Salt
  • Small plastic bowl

Consider making a duplicate kit and keep them in different places so you’ll never be looking for one last minute.

No matter what, it’s always best to call your Vet first and follow directions in an emergency. But having these basic tips in the back of your mind while you wait for help to arrive can make all the difference in your horse’s health. If you have any other first aid for horse owners tips, share them on our Facebook page. We’d love to hear from you! 

Counting Down The 6 Most Common Mistakes Horse Owner’s Make

Posted on: April 10th, 2017 by Liddleworks Indie Media No Comments

Not all horses are the same. Some you can get on and easily ride. Some are so green that you could be easily injured if you have little or no riding experience. The ones easy to ride are typically older horses. They have been ridden the most and will be the most forgiving of a beginning rider’s mistakes. The younger horses will be the hardest to ride unless they have been thoroughly broke. There are many common mistakes horse owners make and we are counting down the most frequent here! 

Mistake #6 – Assuming A Horse Trainer’s Technique Is The Only Way To Train A Horse

When novice horse owners begin to experience problems with their horse, they go looking for answers. The first place they look is in books. When the author of the book explains a training technique, the reader assumes that’s how it’s done by everyone. But when they can’t train their horse with that technique, they assume a difficult or untrainable horse. What novice horse owners need to know is that there are typically lots of ways to train a horse to do one thing. If you try something and it doesn’t work, try something else.

Mistake #5 – Not Riding A Horse Enough

New horse owners may experience problems, not because the horse suddenly goes sour, but because they don’t ride their horses enough. About the best thing you can do to have a good horse is to ride it, ride it and ride it some more. Don’t ride him just once every couple weeks. Horses need to ridden a lot to make them a good riding horse.

Mistake #4 – Thinking A Problem With The Horse Is The Horse’s Fault

Although a horse may have some problems, they are typically a result of the horse’s owner. There are rarely problem horses, it’s more likely there are problem riders. For instance, if you can’t get your horse to ride away from home (this is called “Barn Sour”) it’s likely because you don’t have control over him. You can establish control with various techniques such as Doubling.

Mistake #3 – Not Understanding How Horses Think

Horses do not think like dogs or cats. Horses are a prey animal which means they run from scary things. They have thousands of years of the “flight instinct” built in their brains. To successfully train them takes patience and understanding that they are naturally fearful and cynical.

Mistake #2 – Not Knowing That Every Interaction With A Horse Is A Training Exercise

Every time you interact with your horse you are training him. Even if your horse is well trained with the lead rope, you are training him every time you use the lead rope. Even when you pet your horse, you are training him. Novice horse owners must think through what they do when working with their horse because they can easily and unknowingly affect a horse’s behaviour.

Mistake #1 – Riding A Horse With Little Or No Understanding Of Horsemanship

A typical novice horse owner will ride their new horse not knowing horse-riding skills. It is important to have an understanding of riding techniques because horses react to leg pressure, how you sit in the saddle, whether or not the rider is tense, and a whole host of other things.

Let’s face it. Horses need to be understood for a horse owner to be successful with their horse. The best thing novice horse owners can do is learn how to ride, learn how horses think, learn what works good to shape horse’s behaviour, and understand that constantly riding a horse is just about the best thing you can do to have a good horse.

What is Equine Inflammation and How do you Treat your Horse?

Posted on: March 16th, 2017 by Liddleworks Indie Media No Comments

Inflammation is the process when white blood cells and substances they produce protect a horse’s from injury and infection with foreign organisms, such as bacteria and viruses.

However, in some diseases, like arthritis, the horse’s body’s immune system — the defense system — triggers an inflammatory response when there are no foreign invaders to fight off. In these diseases, called autoimmune diseases, the animal’s normally protective immune system causes damage to its own tissues. The body responds as if normal tissues are infected or somehow abnormal.

What Causes Equine Inflammation and What Are the Effects?

Inflammation occurs when chemicals from the horse’s white blood cells are released into the blood or affected tissues to protect the horse’s body from foreign substances. This release of chemicals increases the blood flow to the area of injury or infection, and may result in redness and warmth. Some of the chemicals cause a leak of fluid into the tissues, resulting in swelling. This protective process may stimulate nerves and cause pain.

The increased number of cells and inflammatory substances within the joint cause irritation, swelling of the joint lining and, eventually, wearing down of cartilage (cushions at the end of bones).

What Diseases Are Associated With Equine Inflammation?

Some, but not all, types of arthritis are the result of misdirected inflammation. Arthritis is a general term that describes inflammation in the joints. Some types of arthritis associated with inflammation include the following:

  • Arthritis
  • OCD (Osteochondritis dissecans)
  • Joint pain
  • Joint stiffness
  • Loss of joint function
  • Muscle stiffness
  • Atrophy

Often, only a few of these symptoms are present.

What to do if your horse has inflammation.

You don’t treat the inflammation. Since inflammation is the immune response to protects the horse from infection from foreign organisms, inflammation is necessary to keep the horse alive. However, to treat the horse’s inflammation, we need to treat the bacterial or viral infection that is the underlying cause of the inflammatory response.

How do Veterinarians Treat Equine Inflammation?

Veterinarian will try to treat of inflammation by eliminating the bacterial infection with antibiotics and attempting some pain relief by administering steroid and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. We’ve found that this course of treatment to be expensive and does not lead to optimal health of the horse. They also administer Bute to mask the pain. 

The Leg Saver® works by emitting specific electrical frequencies that kill viral and bacterial infections. Administering the Leg Saver® to the ting points on your horse creates the wrong environment for viruses and bacteria to survive and consequently, the inflammatory response is no longer required and the inflammation is naturally eliminated.